x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 July 2017

Egypt eyes $1.8bn for extra economic stimulus

Region The Egyptian government will propose a stimulus package worth 10 billion Egyptian pounds at the ruling party's annual conference this month.

CAIRO // The Egyptian government will propose a stimulus package worth 10 billion Egyptian pounds (Dh6.6bn) at the ruling party's annual conference this month, a government official said on Sunday. Egypt implemented a stimulus package worth 15bn Egyptian pounds in 2008/9. A minister said last month the government was considering another package for this financial year worth 8 to 10bn pounds. "The government will raise an additional 10bn pounds to be spent on infrastructure projects such as road building and water treatment to create jobs," an official with the Ministry of Economic Development told Reuters.

The official, who asked not to be named, said the new stimulus package would be proposed at a conference of the ruling National Democratic Party at the end of this month. He did not say when the extra money would be spent. Egypt has been hurt by a decline in tourism earnings, Suez Canal revenues and foreign investment in the world downturn. Egypt's economy grew by 4.7 per cent in 2008/09, down from 7.2 per cent in 2007/08.

But analysts say the country has proved relatively resilient, partly because its banks are flush with cash and the economy is diversified. The government says the economy is expected to grow by more than 5 per cent this financial year. *Reuters